Mazda believes cars should be fun to drive. One of the best ways to ensure that is by first making our cars safe to drive. In recent years, the Mazda3, Mazda6, Mazda2 and Mazda5 have all been awarded 5 stars in Euro NCAP safety tests. And with our new Rear Vehicle Monitoring (RVM) system, we've done it again.
When we began the development of the RVM system, we identified that nearly 5 per cent of all accidents were between vehicles driving in the same direction, and nearly 80 per cent of these were due to a lane change. So we asked ourselves a simple question: "How can we reduce this number?"
Our answer was to mount two radar sensors, one on each side of the rear bumper that constantly measure the distance to, and relative speed of, surrounding vehicles. Activated at speeds above 60 km/h, the RVM system warns a driver with a proximity indicator light mounted on the side-view mirror if a vehicle is in the blind spot area, or is approaching this area. If a driver switches on the turn signal in the direction of an approaching vehicle, the system warns the driver by blinking the proximity light and a beeping warning signal to not change lanes. Mazda's RVM is designed to detect all kinds of vehicles, including motorcycles, and to work in virtually all weather conditions.
Mazda was the first Japanese carmaker to introduce a RVM system in Europe with the Mazda6 in 2008. Since then, the system has been made available on the Mazda3, the Mazda CX-7 and it will be included on the all-new Mazda CX-5 , to be introduced at this year's IAA in Frankfurt. The IAA is also where Mazda will be awarded the coveted "Euro NCAP Advanced" for its safety achievements with the Rear Vehicle Monitoring system on the Mazda3.
The Euro NCAP is an independent crash-test organisation made up of consumer associations, motoring clubs and transport authorities across Europe. They have been awarding automotive safety ratings since 1997.
Making cars fun to drive, by making them safer to drive, may not be the easiest way to build new cars. But it's the way Mazda builds them.